A TikTok creator is calling out Starbucks over what they say is the company’s attempt to reel in customers who are boycotting the company over its alleged association with the Israel Defense Forces and its treatment of union workers.
In a nearly four-minute video, TikTok creator @lexdumont detailed ways in which the company seems to have retaliated against union members who expressed their support and solidarity with Palestine via social media. Starbucks workers are being presented by the union Workers United. @lexdumont’s video has garnered 121,000 views as of Friday evening.
@lexdumont shared an NPR article with viewers that detailed how the company is offering new perks for non-union workers including raises—employees who have worked four years or less will receive a 3% or 4% raise depending on years of service—and shortening how much employees have to work before they start accruing vacation days.
Starbucks’ wages currently average $17.50 per hour, according to NPR.
“They want yes men,” she said about Starbucks in her video. “They want people they can silence. They want someone that they can tell, ‘Hey, you’re not allowed to post that, or you will lose your job.’”
Later on in the video, she also shared how it appeared the company had made it easier for customers to earn reward stars, something she claims could be their way of enticing customers who may be boycotting the coffee chain to buy their beverages and products.
“So [it’s] the fact that they’re offering 70 bonus stars for literally anything at this point,” @lexdumont said. “Like, ‘Please just buy a latte, please buy a cold brew, please buy a bakery item.’ [This] is so good. It’s so good to see because you are falling apart and you’re standing 10 toes down on it. I will say that you are firm in your ignorance. But a lot of us are 10 toes down against genocide.”
The Daily Dot has reached out to Starbucks and @lexdumont via TikTok comment for their response to this article.
In the last couple of years, there’s been a nationwide campaign to unionize Starbucks locations, with at least 366 U.S. locations voting to unionize since 2021, NPR reported.
Starbucks is suing Workers United after a Starbucks union account posted on X, formerly Twitter, “Solidarity with Palestine!” on Oct. 9. The post was eventually taken down, and in a lawsuit against Starbucks, Workers United said the tweet was not authorized by union leaders. Boycotts have emerged since the lawsuits, as @lexdumont mentioned in her video.
“I was in the store the other day, and there was a ton of Starbucks items [in] the clearance area… And I was looking for coffee, and almost all the coffee was sold out, like the pods, except for Starbucks. And it was just a beautiful thing to see,” @lexdumont said. “It was amazing. So good luck to you, Starbucks. Um, have fun, I guess, just being the sh*ttiest company around. And I encourage us all to continue the boycott, because we all have humanity and empathy, and we are not ignorant.”
@lexdumont’s comments section was full of mixed responses to her video, but she remained adamant in her assertion that Starbucks seemed to be reacting to pressure from boycotts. Meanwhile, there was a sizeable amount of people who expressed their solidarity with the TikToker.
“There’s something so satisfying about watching greedy corporations come face to face with the consequences of their actions,” user @abbeyschaff11 said.